There’s more than one way to stretch a dollar. In fact, according to a March 2017 Farm Journal Media survey of more than 500 farmers, they’ve identified more than a dozen ways they plan to reduce or economize input costs in 2017. Seven in particular were the most popular.
Here were the top responses. (Note: Respondents were able to give more than one answer.)
1. Reduce farm equipment purchases (67%)
2. Delay non-equipment capital purchases (46%)
3. Employ no-till or low-till farming practices (43%)
4. Purchase less traited seed to reduce seed costs (29%)
5. Negotiate lower land rents with landlords (26%)
6. Increase variable-rate application of fertilizer and crop protection inputs (26%)
7. Reduce energy consumption (through better equipment maintenance and/or power generation (20%)
Other ideas farmers shared about reducing input costs include switching acres to another crop, purchasing fewer in-season inputs, reducing the use of agronomists or outside consultants, purchasing less crop insurance, restructuring loans to improve cash flow and firing or not re-hiring some personnel.
This study has been conducted annually each spring since 2012.